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Need an operating concept: The case of social work with children and families

Sheppard, M, Woodcock Ross, J (1999) Need an operating concept: The case of social work with children and families. Child and Family Social Work, 4 (1). pp. 67-76. ISSN 1356-7500. (doi:10.1046/j.1365-2206.1999.00104.x) (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided. (Contact us about this Publication)
Official URL
http://dx.doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-2206.1999.00104.x

Abstract

Need is widely regarded as central to social work practice, yet is equally regarded as far from unproblematic as a concept. Considerable debate has occurred at two levels: the policy/service delivery level and an abstract conceptual level which considers the nature of need. It is suggested here, however, that between these two levels lies an ‘operating concept’. This focuses on the problem of defining and identifying need in the immediate circumstances of practice. At this level, two concepts of need are put forward: a ‘deficit concept’ and a ‘differentiated concept’. It is argued that the latter provides a more coherent conceptualization of need. In this concept, need is the superordinate concept which contains within it three subconcepts: problems, supports and resources, which are connected. These are analysed, and their potential as a basis for developing a system of need classification which may be used in practice is explored.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1046/j.1365-2206.1999.00104.x
Subjects: H Social Sciences
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Social Policy Sociology and Social Research
Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Social Policy Sociology and Social Research > Social Policy
Depositing User: Lucie Patch
Date Deposited: 24 Nov 2016 11:40 UTC
Last Modified: 29 May 2019 18:17 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/58992 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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